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The Maybe That Drives You Mad

Most of us have one, don’t we?
The one that got away,
The one we will wonder about
Until our dying day…

We don’t wish we were still with them,
Or want another go,
The problem is uncertainty-
The fact we just don’t know…

We do not know what might have been,
How far me might have got,
If the ending was inevitable,
Maybe, maybe not…

If we’d said this or done that,
Might the outcome have been swayed?
Could they have been persuaded?
Might they actually have stayed?

We tie our minds in sailor’s knots
Thus fashioning our own madness,
We carry it around with us:
A soul-deep, aching sadness…

Half a lifetime ago I learned
There is no correlation
Between the longterm impact
And a relationship’s duration…

Sometimes the shortest partnerships
Create the most loose ends,
You struggle to persuade yourself
You were better off as friends…

I’d rather have double engine failure
Over the ocean somewhere
Than have my plane shot down
Before it’s fully in the air…

A reckless attitude perhaps,
My wishing for a crash,
But at least I’d have my answer
In the form of fire and ash…

In the end we must content ourselves
With probabilities,
And force ourselves to let go
Of lost possibilities…

Stop yearning for conclusive proof
When none is to be had,
For when all is said and done
It’s the maybe that drives you mad…

Lauren Phillips is a language teacher and writer with a deep love of words in all their forms. She uses writing to help her process her own tangled thoughts.

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